SOAS University of London

Centre of African Studies

'Talking Eritrea' Series - Eritreans: Migrants or Migrating Refugees

Dan Connell

Date: 3 February 2014Time: 5:00 PM

Finishes: 3 February 2014Time: 7:00 PM

Venue: Russell Square: College Buildings Room: 4429

Type of Event: Seminar

Hundreds of thousands of Eritreans have fled their once promising nation after a devastating border war with Ethiopia in 1998-2000 and the imposition of a repressive regime. Most of those fleeing are conscripts escaping an open-ended “national service” of military postings and forced labour. But their flight carries new threats, from border guards with shoot-to-kill orders and human traffickers who torture them for ransom to perilous desert and sea crossings that can end in tragedies like the Lampedusa shipwreck in October 2013. Where is the line between a “migrant” and a “refugee,” when motives, routes and experience among political refugees, economic migrants and victims of trafficking overlap? These and other questions will be the subject of a slide show and lecture drawing on recent visits to refugee camps and communities in Ethiopia, Sudan, Egypt and Israel.

Speaker: Dan Connell is a senior lecturer in journalism and African studies at Simmons College, Boston.
Chair: Martin Plaut (Institute of Commonwealth Studies)
Discussant: Jason Mosley (Chatham House)

In collaboration with Justice Africa

Organiser: The Centre of African Studies and Justice Africa

Contact email:

Contact Tel: 0207 898 4370